Have you ever heard the question – Is Email Marketing Dead? If you haven’t, you are probably new to the digital marketing world. This is the kind of question that should be avoided for at least the next 5-10 years, or until some new form of communication is introduced.

If you are still wondering what the answer is, it is a resounding ‘NO’. Email marketing is not dead, no matter which way it is evaluated or which analyst you ask. Email marketing has proven its worth with the highest return on investment of any marketing method and great levels of audience engagement.

However, this is not to say that email marketing hasn’t changed, and that it won’t need to continue to evolve in order to keep up with today’s generation of tech-saturated youth. In fact, in response to the potential purchasing power of the younger generations, email marketing has become a completely different tool for audience engagement.

“The evolution has been happening all this time, and email, as a result, is so much better,” says Kim Davis from Direct Marketing News. “Among all those drab, text-based communications, perhaps ornamented with a call-to-action button and a stock image, are emails that don’t look–or act–like emails at all.”

Responsive and Contextual Email Formats

Ever since the first batch-and-blast email brought about the beginning of sales success with email marketing, the form of digital advertising has continued to adapt to audiences and grow with them over time.

“Those changes have accelerated in the past couple of years as the targeting and location-based technology has improved,” says Davis. “The most advanced emails of today are responsive to recipient behavior and the context in which they’re opened (and re-opened).”

What Does Responsive Mean?

Responsive emails are ones that can adapt to a variety of factors depending on how it is being consumed. Device compatibility and functionality are two of the most basic components of a responsive email, but the most advanced email marketing goes way beyond mobile optimization and reaches for audience engagement in many creative ways to maximize personalization.

This means that everything from modifying subject lines, to creating content based on browsing history, to weather and geo-location triggers are being used to create emails that respond to its recipient’s profile and activity. This is developing emails with a much greater ability for audience engagement, which is promising to raise conversion rates.

What Does A Responsive Email Look Like?

“Take, as an example, an appointment-based company,” says Davis. “Modern email technology means that a user can not only identify Lenscrafters locations, but can interact with a calendar embedded in the email to schedule an appointment at the nearest one. Not ready to book? When you re-open the email, the calendar will be updated.”

Despite the availability of these types of advancements in email marketing, most people probably notice that the majority of their emails still appear to resemble the old stock-image, text-based, flat and dry email spam that we are used to.

That being recognized, progress takes time. For now, only those who are on the most cutting-edge of email marketing will get to enjoy the benefits of emails that react to their target audiences. This is only expected to gain popularity and continue to evolve as new technologies open up new opportunities for personalization and optimization.

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